Merry Christmas 2013

xmass girls 2

I hope everyone is having a fabulous Christmas.  my life of course is never without its adventures. And while last year I was on a cruise ship in the Caribbean this year found me spending Christmas eve by the side of the freeway.

I had gotten tickets for my mom, her husband and myself to see the Frozen Disney Show at the El Capitan in Hollywood.  I decided to take my pink van and leave early because the bookcase I had on lay away was ready to be picked up.  So as I am talking to my mom I hear this really loud strange noise. I tell my mom I have to get off the phone and sure enough my car was dying.  I was driving on the 14 Freeway south from Palmdale which is basically driving through the desert and no mans land.  But hey I’m not worried I have AAA.  I call AAA and get a dispatcher that can not understand what I am telling her or the location of where I am at. I have to repeat the information to her quite a few times.  I was told that the tow truck would  be arriving in about 30-45 minutes which is the usual. No biggie I thought to myself I’ll just put on my make-up while I am waiting. Make-up is finished, kind of that scary old lady make-up put on in  a car type of thing but still no tow truck.  No biggie I’ll just do my Christmas cards for my niece and nephew while I am waiting.  Christmas cards done and an hour later still no tow truck so I call AAA to get an update and I am told the dispatcher called a tow truck company in the wrong city and another truck was being dispatched which should arrive in 30 minutes.

30 minutes!!!!!!  You have got to be friggin’ kidding me.  I have been waiting on the shoulder of the freeway for an hour and it was now 2:30 pm and the tickets were for the 4:00 pm show. Now the anxiety is beginning to kick in.  Well I have to get dressed in the van as I was losing time now.  I had worn jeans and a t-shirt out the door because I was supposed to be getting the bookcase.  No biggie, I thought to myself. I have changed in and out of costumes by the sides of roads many times in career as a kids entertainer today would be no different.  I am all made up, Christmas cards have been done, and I am wearing my Christmas clothes and still no tow truck.  I call AAA to get another update, this time the driver was told I was off the freeway and he took a different route via the streets.  I’m like no I have been on the shoulder of the freeway for the past hour and a half.  Look for the bright pink van–you can’t miss it.  It felt like an eternity waiting for that tow truck to arrive.

Finally it arrived–what a relief!!!  We made it to the show by 3:45 pm, just enough time to park, get pop-corn and go to the ladies room.  The evening was cut short because now I needed to get a ride back home.  So I will see my sister’s kids on Sunday as I got tickets for all of us to see the ice sculpture exhibit and winter village at the Queen Mary as their Christmas gift.

Seriously I can not wait for 2013 to be over.  I can not believe all that I have gone through in one year.  It’s time for a new start and new beginnings.

Below are a couple of pictures of Christmas in my home and me at Frozen.

Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night.

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Christmas Caribbean Cruise…Part 8 George Town, Grand Cayman


The second stop on the cruise was George Town, Grand Cayman.  Father Tom and I had convinced Josh and Sara to join us on the excursion we were taking.  Below is the description in the brochure.

Island Tour & Tiki Beach –

OVERVIEW: Enjoy the best of Grand Cayman with an island tour as well as time at Seven Mile Beach. HIGHLIGHTS: Enjoy an island tour that includes the Observation Tower with its panoramic views of Grand Cayman and stops at Hell to view the jagged rock formations and the rum cake factory to sample some delicious rum cake. Your tour concludes at Tiki Beach on Seven Mile Beach to relax or take a swim. A lounge chair and a welcome rum/fruit punch are included. The facilities include toilets, changing rooms and fresh water showers. NOTES: Additional beach activities available at guest’s expense and discretion. Snacks and drinks are available at a beach restaurant at your expense.
Because this port of call was so small we had to get into a smaller boat to get to the port.  Once at port we were going to get into a small tour bus.  Well there was some kind of problem with a bus being broken down so people were getting re-arranged into the buses that were present.  So basically our bus was filled to capacity like sardines with no breathing space.  This was not an issue for our little group of four because we managed to get good seats.
The first stop, at least I think it was the first stop was the Rum Cake Factory. Ahemmm.  When I was a young girl and visiting my homeland of Puerto Rico we did the Barcardi Rum Factory Tour, in which we got to see the inside of the factory and the whole process of making rum and it was quite interesting.  So I imagined this tour would be something similar.  Ahemmmm.
Well not so much.  The rum cake factory was no more than a small storefront in which they had everyone line up and you get to sample the rum cakes, which were yummy and I would have bought one but they did not have the flavor I wanted and some rum.  Well, since I already had my Jamaican Coconut Rum no need to purchase any more.  Here are some of the pictures I took on that bit of the tour.  There is more of the tour past the pictures.
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We never did make it to the Observation Tower, which I imagined would be a nice place to stop and take pictures.  Actually there was a bit of dissention in the group regarding that stop. I believe the stop where the Tower was located was near a shopping center but most of the shops were closed because it was “Box Day“–I believe this is a U.K. holiday, the day after Christmas. So the driver convinced the bus load that maybe we shouldn’t stop.  Well, I looked out the bus window and there was a very pretty park and bay–so who cares if the stores were open–I didn’t come to shop I came to look at the scenery. So, I am like excuse me but I think we should take a vote on this and be democratic.  Huh, well wouldn’t you know it no one, not even my tour buddies raised their hands to support me.  I was so pissed.  Well, the next part I don’t really remember the exact words but apparently I was so pissed that I said something along the lines of God-karma- and putting a curse on everyone.  So, we don’t get off the bus–mind you some of the people are squished like sardines so I would have thought that a bit of leg stretching would have been in order.
Well, there is a God and there is karma because we could not continue to the next destination spot because all of the drivers were on a schedule to make sure not one venue gets over crowed.  So instead of stopping by the bay for about 10-15 we all got to sit in a hot bus with no air conditioning while the driver stops in front of this pink house and starts to talk about the wood on the roof, the white sand that was brought on the lawn to simulate snow or some such cockamaney story–the bottom line was we were trapped sitting on the hot bus listening to some boring story because no one had wanted to get off at the bay.  Yes, sir I would say that is instant karma.
The next stop was Hell.  No, seriously that was the name of the town.

Hell, Grand Cayman

Hell, Grand Cayman island

Hell’s Gift Shop, Hell, Grand Cayman island

Hell’s Service Station, Hell, Grand Cayman island

Hell is a group of short, black, limestone formations located in Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands. Located in West Bay, it is roughly the size of half a soccer field. People are not allowed to be amongst the limestone formations but viewing platforms do exist for visitors.

Hell got its name

There are numerous versions of how Hell received its name, but they are generally variations on “a local official exclaimed, ‘This is what Hell must look like.'”

It is also claimed that the name “Hell” is derived from the fact that if a pebble is thrown out into the formation, it echoes amongst the limestone peaks and valleys and sounds as if the pebble is falling all the way down to “Hell.”

Regardless of how it first came to be called Hell, the name stuck and the area has become a tourist attraction, featuring a fire-engine red hell-themed post office from which you can send “postcards from hell”, and a gift shop with ‘Satan’ passing out souvenirs while greeting people with phrases like ‘How the hell are you?’ and ‘Where the hell are you from?’[1][2]

Below are my pictures of Hell.  The story continues past the pictures…

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L to R, Sara, Tom and Josh

The last stop on the tour was the beach–yeah finally!!!!  It was beautiful and uneventful.  Of course the talk at dinner that night was a recap of the day and how I cursed a bus-load of people because they didn’t want to get off of the bus.

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